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July 31, 2003


NY Times reports on how

NY Times reports on how kids and parents are increasingly using technology to stay in constant communication while the kids are away at summer camp. Camp administrators don't like it because they predict, correctly, that talking to your parents on a contraband cell phone or emailing every day will only make kids more homesick. Interestingly, the article includes several examples of kids issuing all kinds of desperate and miserable emails and calls to their parents during the first few days of camp, then having a great time for the rest of their 4-weeks away from home. Seems to me like the no-calls no-emails policy is more for the parents than the kids: parents seem to be more clingy with their children these days, and desire to monitor them constantly. A single email saying "please come get me and take me home" sends them into a panic (who's really the needy one here, kids or parents?), so camps know not to allow access to instant communication.

When I was a camper, I remember the kids who would cry in their bunks every night to generally be the same kids who would receive elaborate packages several times a week from home, full of snacks and cuddly toys and clothes and cool pens and stuff. I got a letter maybe once a week, ate the other kids' snacks, and had a great time. Thanks, Mom. -amy

    NYT issued this funny clarification on 8/1: "Because of an editing error, an article in Circuits yesterday about the role of e-mail and other electronic tools in dealing with homesickness at summer camp referred imprecisely to one camper, Sophie Feldman. She asked her mother in an online chat to arrive a day early to pick her up, but did not ask to leave camp early." I can see Sophie's outrage as she read the Times article, over Froot Loops and orange slices. "MOM!! I did not ask to leave camp early!! Call them up and tell them!" -adm

posted by amy at 11:06 AM | #


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